Tampa’s Steven Stamkos set off a mini firestorm this week just by favoriting a tweet that wondered aloud if he might ever play in Toronto. One month earlier we saw the same thing with Winnipeg’s Evander Kane, who favorited a tweet requesting that he come play for the Flyers.
Social media is a wild and wacky world; one that we as a society don’t fully understand. I deal with this a lot in my day job. Stuff is just not clear. Twitter’s “favorites” feature in particular is kinda poorly designed. It means different things to different people, and the feature is not nearly as private as the name suggests.
But the point I really want to make is this: Alex Ovechkin has favorited just one tweet, and it was his own.
Back in the day, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser decided to call its bookmarks “favorites.” Favorites were a private list of the user’s preferred web pages, and thus everyone who used IE (which was 90% of web users 13 years ago) began to think of favorites as a private thing.
On Twitter, they mean lots of different things. When I favorite a tweet, it could mean that I intend to look at it later. Sometimes I’ll favorite a tweet mentioning me when I don’t have a response but I want the tweeter to know I saw it. I will often favorite tweets when I want to encourage the person who tweeted it to do more stuff like it. And then sometimes I just favorite pictures of Alex Morgan and Hayley Williams.
(Or, in Alex Ovechkin’s case, he favorited his own tweet because that’s just how he does things.)
While Twitter uses favorites to promote the most popular tweets, it’s still not clear to users what favorites are “for.” In the light of the last month’s news, it should at least be clear that they are public.
On that note, let’s run down the best of the Caps’ favorited tweets.
Boom. Solo-shot home run.
Жанна ты очень сильный человек!!!мы все тебя очень любим!молимся за тебя!!!мы все с тобой!!!!
— Alex Ovechkin (@ovi8) January 21, 2014
It translates like this: Jeanne, you are very strong person! We love you very much! We pray for you! We are all with you! So it’s actually pretty sweet. Still, I’m filing this next to the story about him entering a raffle to win a chance to meet himself.
Sage advice from the guru:
To the mind that is still, the whole universe will surrender.
— Russell Simmons (@UncleRUSH) May 31, 2014
I’ve got no idea what that means.
— Maria Kirilenko (@mkirilenko) April 9, 2014
— Home of The Blue Cup (@Hes_Not_Here) April 9, 2014
What’s in the blue cup?
Brooks favorited a bunch of people who wished him happy birthday last month, which is sweet, but if you were paying eerily close attention, you could have figured out the love connection way back in early February.
— Milissa Sears (@milissasears) February 7, 2014
— Nate Schmidt (@nateschmidt29) April 28, 2014
Hiiiiii Emily Schmidt.
when your hot your hot @nateschmidt29
— Michael Latta (@Latta17) December 9, 2013
I like that Nate and Michael favorite each other’s stuff, but I’ve gotta chime in on the grammar.
Gorgeous. The floor. The colors. The accent island. pic.twitter.com/c9cuLpKuZu
— lmao (@lmaoseriously) June 23, 2014
This cracks me up. Not sure why.
— Neil Greenberg (@ngreenberg) June 29, 2014
So Tom is into the fancystats? Nerd!
— John Dorian (@_brennan__) November 23, 2013
Does this get more or less creepy because he faved it?
— lisa cosentino (@LisaLisacoz7) December 29, 2013
This one is kind of boring.
Shooting ALF took over 20 hours per episode. It was so stressful that this happened! –> http://t.co/QWpOR0ff38
— OMG Facts (@OMGFacts) July 7, 2014
Pro athletes are just like us: spending way too much time on meaningless trivia!
— Gina (@gnaabug) November 6, 2012
Why you’d want evidence of this, I don’t know.
Björk is considered the 5th most acclaimed female vocalist of all time.
— What The F*** Facts (@WhatTheFFacts) June 21, 2014
Braden and I agree.
Steve is the organization’s most prolific favoriter by a mile.
— RMNB (@russianmachine) June 9, 2014
Oh hell yeah. I knew I liked him for a reason.
Closing thought: If you’re famous, be careful what you favorite. Maybe you should go– like RIGHT NOW– and un-favorite some stuff. Maybe your agent should have probably told you this already.